Not-So-Marbled Cheesecake Brownies

It looks simple.  In theory, it should be easy.  Martha can do it in her sleep.  Deb makes it look like a piece of cake.  But I’ll be the first to admit that swirling two different batters together to achieve a perfect marbled effect isn’t as easy as it seems.  I’ve ventured into marbling a couple times and it’s always ended in a muddled mess.  The picture-perfect swirls of different flavors and textures were simply not my destiny.

brownie batter drip

Not one to surrender to failure (especially not when it involves chocolate and/or cheesecake!), I decided to give marbling another whirl … literally.  Due to what I can only assume was constant whining about the lack of brownie pans in my kitchen, my boyfriend got me a Baker’s Edge pan for Christmas.  I had been reading about the fantastic results that this pan produces from Nicole at Baking Bites for awhile, so I was fairly giddy about trying it out.  It is essentially a 9 x 13 baking pan that has internal “walls” that create edges throughout the dish.  This is supposed to help with even cooking and ensures lots of edges to brownies, cookie bars, and even lasagna!

brownies resting in pan up close

Now, for someone who is already challenged when it comes to achieving a recognizable marbling effect, it probably wasn’t the best idea to attempt this with a pan that boasts a two-inch wide snake of swirling room.  Logic and obvious obstacles aside, I proceeded to tackle marbling yet again.   I always like to try the recipes that come with baking pans or kitchen appliances.  I have a probably mistaken belief that these recipes must be tried and true for them to be included in the packaging by the manufacturer.

brownies close up

Both the brownie batter and the cheesecake batter had a bit too much flour in them for me, but the results were still delicious.  Unfortunately, the batters were very thick, which did not lend themselves to being swirled together.  The resulting brownies weren’t quite the picture of swirly goodness I had hoped for, in fact, they were basically brownies topped with a layer of cheesecake, but they were delightfully fudgy nonetheless.  Frankly, they were so yummy that not one person turned them down because of the lack of swirling.

brownies in the box


Marbled Cheesecake Brownies

Cook Time: 45-50 minutes


For the brownies:
1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
12 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
10 oz. bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1 1/2 cup sugar
3 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract

For the Cheesecake Topping:
6 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 egg yolks
1/4 cup all purpose flour


- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly spray a 9x13 pan (or a Baker's Edge pan) with non-stick cooking spray.
- Make the brownie base first. Combine flour, baking soda and salt in a small bowl.
- In a medium bowl, sitting over a simmering pot of water (double boiler method) melt the butter and chocolate, stirring until melted. Remove from heat and stir in sugar.
- Stir in one egg at a time, followed by the vanilla extract.
- Finally, stir in the flour mixture.
- To make the cheesecake filling, combine the cream cheese and butter in a small bowl until smooth and creamy. Stir in the sugar and vanilla extract.
- Stir in egg yolks, one at a time.
- Add the flour and stir to combine.
- Pour the brownie base into the prepared pan. Pour the cheesecake filling on top of the brownie base. Using a non-stick safe utensil, swirl the cheesecake into the brownie base making sure not to over mix.
- Bake for 45-50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the brownies comes out clean. Let the brownies cool completely in the pan before removing.

Adapted from the Baker's Edge
Brownie Base Ingredients

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10 Responses to “Not-So-Marbled Cheesecake Brownies”

  1. 1
    caitlyn — February 21, 2009 2:43 am

    They look delicious!

  2. 2
    Spongie — February 21, 2009 3:31 am

    I would plow these brownies all night long.
    That is all.

  3. 3
    Colloquial Cook — February 21, 2009 12:57 pm

    Apparently the way to get those professional loking swirls is to put the creamcheese topping in a piping bag and to pipe it in blobs inside the brownie, and then make a few swirls with a knife blade. Now the reason I researched… I did it exactly like you :-) i didn’t have the patience to make another one and try the piping bag method. Let us know if you do!!

    • kate replied: — February 21st, 2009 8:00 pm

      Thanks for the tip! I’ll absolutely give that a try next time.

  4. 4
    bakingblonde — February 21, 2009 1:39 pm

    I love cheesecake and brownies together.

  5. 5
    Stephanie — February 22, 2009 12:31 am

    These look great!!!!!!! =)

  6. 6
    Rebecca — February 24, 2009 1:13 pm

    I thought I was the only one who was swirl impaired! I’ve given up and decided it’s easier to just call them ‘cheesecake topped brownies.’

  7. 7
    ingrid — February 27, 2009 2:34 pm

    I stink at swirling. I tend to be over zealous. With that said my thoughts are if it taste good who cares?! :-)

    Terrific photos….your brownies do look wonderfully fudgy, yum, just the way I like ‘em!

  8. 8
    jessica — March 14, 2009 5:42 pm

    I saw your recipe and decided to make them right away since I’m expecting company for a night of Taboo. Ran to the store for the chocolate, everything else was already in house. vEry easy to make. They’re baking now. I’ll let you know the outcome!

  9. 9

    A story with a good ending. I’m glad they tasted good, and they look good too, marbling-shmarbling…

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